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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2008 1:45 pm 
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Hi looking for some advice. We moved to the UK from the US late last January (we are american). My son achieved a 118 score with no outside tutuoring and honestly very little practice except for what he had in school. In the US he was the top in his grade, in an academically advanced class achieving straight A's. I don't have the traditional history that people have mentioned here on this site. I only have his work for 2 terms! Plus what I have from the US. In addition he is an August birthday and was a year behind in the US school system transferring from Grade 3 to Year 5 last year when we arrived.

the head will support us with a 1 , 2 score.......

What kind of information might I need to obtain from my US school system?

Also how do you think I should approach the fact that while we speak English as our first language, he has only be exposed to British English for 7 months before taking the exam?

I've read the B19 entry, but we are a little different than that.

I'm sorry this is so long, but never having navigated this system before I need all the help I can get.

thanks.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2008 3:51 pm 
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Welcome, boiler, and congratulations on finding B19!

118 is a respectable, borderline score. It would be helpful to know whether this was for the first or second test, and what the other score was.

You do have mitigating circumstances - it can't have been easy for your son transferring to another country, a different curriculum, and a different year group. Could you confirm that the headteacher's "1" was for academic potential, and the "2" for attitude? If so, this could be more useful than evidence from a foreign school.

The panel would probably expect to see a report from the school in the US, but I doubt that it will help very much unless it clearly states that your son is well above average ability, and you can prove that this was a high achieving school.

If you have time to spare, you could get hold of some VR tests from this website or a bookshop like W H Smith, and research whether you can find examples of any questions that would be problematic because of differences between British and American English. To be able to show a panel some real examples (albeit from a different test) would help make your argument more striking.

As stated in B19, time and money permitting, a report from a qualified educational psychologist (using WISC or BAS tests) could provide useful additional evidence of cognitive ability, especially if the outcome is very favourable (e.g. results at the 90th+ percentile). Q&As, B3:
http://www.elevenplusexams.co.uk/11plus ... #section-B

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2008 4:14 pm 
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Joined: Tue Nov 25, 2008 1:36 pm
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Quote:
118 is a respectable, borderline score. It would be helpful to know whether this was for the first or second test, and what the other score was.


118 was the first score, 111 the second (I know it's a strike against him)

Quote:
You do have mitigating circumstances - it can't have been easy for your son transferring to another country, a different curriculum, and a different year group. Could you confirm that the headteacher's "1" was for academic potential, and the "2" for attitude? If so, this could be more useful than evidence from a foreign school.


The 1,2 was as you stated.

Quote:
The panel would probably expect to see a report from the school in the US, but I doubt that it will help very much unless it clearly states that your son is well above average ability, and you can prove that this was a high achieving school.


The school reports do state exactly that....I'm not sure how to prove the schooling was high achieving would a letter from the principal work? I can pull reports off the schools website that says they achieve a 90% pass rating on their standardized testing (KS1 type testing) and the state average is 60% is that enough? I don't want to overwhelm them with papers, but I can prove all of this. I also have his test scores from the cognitive ability testing he took to get into the advanced cirrculum in the US.

Also would letters from his teacher and pricipal in the US be helpful?


Quote:
If you have time to spare, you could get hold of some VR tests from this website or a bookshop like W H Smith, and research whether you can find examples of any questions that would be problematic because of differences between British and American English. To be able to show a panel some real examples (albeit from a different test) would help make your argument more striking.


I do have one of those, probably need a few more though?

Quote:
As stated in B19, time and money permitting, a report from a qualified educational psychologist (using WISC or BAS tests) could provide useful additional evidence of cognitive ability, especially if the outcome is very favourable (e.g. results at the 90th+ percentile).



Where might I get a hold of one of these psychologists? :)


THANK YOU so much for your help.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2008 4:22 pm 
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Location: Gloucestershire
A child in my daughters class went to the US for a few years, and was bored at school - she'd been put into a class for the next year up, but even so, the work didn't stretch her at all. She's been back since mid year 5, and has just passed her 11+ in Gloucestershire (recovering well at school).

This isn't an indictment of the US educational system - it's more to illustrate that children start school in the US later than they do here - and whilst they do catch up in secondary school, in primary it is not so. So it's worth pointing out to the panel that this is the case & that your son had not been stretched / educated to the same level as an average English child of the same age, and that that could explain the missing couple of points! If you can find any studies pointing this out, all the better.

Good luck.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2008 4:37 pm 
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Quote:
118 was the first score, 111 the second (I know it's a strike against him)
Yes - I was hoping the trend might have been upwards! You're bound to be asked if you can think of any reason for the disparity.

Quote:
The 1,2 was as you stated.
Good! The school clearly have no doubts about his ability.


Quote:
would a letter from the principal work? I can pull reports off the schools website that says they achieve a 90% pass rating on their standardized testing (KS1 type testing) and the state average is 60% is that enough? I don't want to overwhelm them with papers, but I can prove all of this.
Yes, I suggest both.

Quote:
I also have his test scores from the cognitive ability testing he took to get into the advanced cirrculum in the US.
Yes, especially if there's an explanation of what the scores mean.

So long as you provide all this information as separate appendices (clearly marked "Appendix 1", "Appendix 2", etc.), don't worry about too much detail.

Quote:
Also would letters from his teacher and pricipal in the US be helpful?
Yes, provided they resist the temptation to write a character reference or a blow by blow account of the curriculum. An appeal panel will basically want to know from them: Is he very bright, and well-above average? Was he performing really well in English, Maths and Science?

Quote:
I do have one of those, probably need a few more though?
It depends whether you've found any examples. :D

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Where might I get a hold of one of these psychologists?
Follow the link in B3 (3 lines from the end).

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THANK YOU so much for your help.
You're welcome - come back if we can be of any further help.

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Etienne


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2008 5:42 pm 
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Joined: Tue Nov 25, 2008 1:36 pm
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thank you both for your help,

I have already found one example of British English....

dear=expensive

You would never use dear in American english. :lol:


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2008 6:01 pm 
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Quote:
your son had not been stretched / educated to the same level as an average English child of the same age, and that that could explain the missing couple of points!
A panel might take the view that this would affect progress in the curriculum rather than verbal reasoning, but I think Capers could be right in that a pupil's vocabulary may not be as well developed.

Quote:
dear=expensive

You would never use dear in American english.


My American vocabulary has just gotten better! :D

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2008 6:09 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 12, 2007 1:21 pm
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What about words like trunk - quite different meaning in the US.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2008 6:27 pm 
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I don't even know a different meaning to the word trunk other than an big piece of luggage or an elephants nose....can you translate for a poor old American?

Trust me as a 40 year old I've had quite an education on words not to use in the UK! I won't go there on the message board for fear of offending people!


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2008 6:29 pm 
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I thought it was used for the boot of a car - :lol:


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